King’s Boxing Gym is home. It is a sweaty sanctuary tucked under an overpass. Many of the buildings in the neighbourhood are sagging and bowed; graffiti colours the streets. The interior of the gym maintains similar characteristics – cardio machines are held together with duct tape, heavy bags are split and patched back together, plywood sheets on the floor are so well worn they appear to be marbled. Photographs and posters line the walls, instantly exposing the history of the space and the community within. There are veterans in this establishment that grew into men and women within the walls of this warehouse. King’s is a fighter’s yellow brick road.
Boxing is strength as well as performance. It is bravery as well as vulnerability. I am interested in the making of a fighter, rather than the result. The moments before a bout can be more complex and charged than the fight itself. Each contender, young and old, has a hunger for something great. My photographs memorialize these young fighters before they become kings.
– Taylor Kay Johnson
Taylor Johnson is a Sacramento born photographer currently living and working in Oakland, California. Raised in a blue collar Christian household, religious themes remain a ubiquitous source of inspiration within her practice. Enamored by the specific brand of Americana unique to the Central Valley of California, Taylor Johnson’s work is truly obsessed with the West Coast’s role of “telephone” in the tradition it represents. See more of Taylor’s work — Website / Instagram